School of GeoSciences

Our biochar facilities

We have a range of bespoke biochar development and production facilities including small, medium and large pyrolysis units.

Using our small, medium and large pyrolysis units in the biochar labs, we aim to understand how production conditions affect:

  • biochar carbon stability
  • the suitability of biochars for enhancing soil processes
  • the composition and properties of the gaseous and liquid products of pyrolysis


Our ongoing strategy for bespoke biochar production research consists of three stages:

Stage 1 Is a lab-scale batch pyrolysis unit capable of producing up to 30 g of biochar per batch. The unit can operate either in a fixed bed or fluidised bed mode and allows us to control precisely the key operating parameters (temperature, heating rate, residence time etc.) and monitor and record its performance.
Stage 2 Is a continuous bench-scale pyrolysis unit. It can produce up to 2 kg of biochar per hour. This unit also allows precise control of the operating conditions and is flexible in terms of feedstock and throughput.
Stage 3 Is a pilot-scale slow pyrolysis unit capable of producing up to 20 kg of biochar per hour in a continuous mode and housed in a purpose-built, dedicated new building. Due to its multi-zone electric heating, the unit allows for excellent control of the production temperature and heating rate even at this relatively large scale and is crucial for our efforts in scaling up bespoke biochar production.

We encourage you to visit our UK Biochar Research Centre website for more details, including:

  • research and projects
  • production and assessment information
  • publications
  • links to resources, news and events

UK Biochar Research Centre website